Team Paradox aims to provide an outlet for students of all ages to discover and explore their passions for science, technology, engineering, art, and math (“STEAM”), by maintaining a student-run, community-supported FIRST Robotics team at San Dieguito High School Academy (SDA).
FIRST FRC Team 2102, Team Paradox is a year round, student-run team based at San Dieguito High School Academy (SDA). Our team was founded in the 2006-2007 season by 2 motivated students, and building from a public school overflowing with creativity and spirit, our team quickly grew. Now, thanks to the support of dedicated parents, mentors, community members and the SDA faculty, our team is 60+ members strong.
As an FRC team, each year we are presented with a game challenge in January, and over a time period of 6 weeks, we design, manufacture and program a robot to compete in the game. Our team, however, is much more than just building robots. In addition, students also organize events, write grants, produce videos, submit awards and create logos. There is a niche for all skills in our team and we are always looking for interested rookies. Prior experience in any field is not required, as mentors and veteran students teach rookies what they need to know about the field(s) they are interested in. In addition, our newly improved rookie education program, Geared Learning, gives new team members valuable experience in all aspects of the team before build season begins.
We recognize the time commitment that members put into this team and work to make every moment valuable. We’re not just nerds with dangerous power tools- everything we do derives from the enthusiasm of the students. Whatever you're interested in, we will recognize and encourage that drive and always put the Passion FIRST. That’s the spirit of our team. That’s who we are.
To better tackle the challenge of running a FIRST FRC team, our team is organized into 4 different branches, all lead by our team President.
Everyone is welcome and anyone can help! If you think you're interested in becoming a part of the Team Paradox family check out the information below.
We are a year-round team and you can join at any time; however, the official FIRST registration window to be on the team starts at the beginning of the school year and continues into October at the latest. You must be officially registered through FIRST to travel with the team to regional competitions. The easiest way for an SDA student to learn about the team is to start coming to our Weekly Monday Meetings, which start within the first few weeks of school. You can also sign up on our email list at Back to School Night, Club Fair, or at Make a Choice Night. You can also reach out to us through our social media pages or contact us directly using the links on our Contact Us page.
Registration paperwork is passed out at our All Team Meeting in September, where you will be given physical paperwork that can be turned in at the Weekly Monday Meetings. You are also given instructions on how to sign up on STIMS. STIMS is how FIRST recognizes you as an official member of our team. In addition, our team requires that you complete a metal shop training course with Mr. Berend, the metal shop teacher, and then complete the metal shop safety test. When all of these requirements are completed, you are an official part of Team Paradox!
If you are a rookie coming onto the team, we offer a program called Geared Learning designed to bring you up to speed. Geared Learning starts in late September and finishes in mid-December. Rookies go through the process of designing and building a robot for a “mini” FIRST game of our team’s creation called Foosbot. During this pre-season time, we also encourage rookies to participate in outreach events, FLL mentoring, and grant writing. The key to being a member of Team Paradox is being around, getting to know people, and not being afraid to ask for a job. We are always looking for motivated students who are willing to help and share ideas of their own.
As a part of our team, you are able to get hands-on experience with machinery and one-on-one time with mentors in a variety of fields. In our Engineering branch, we teach you programming, electrical engineering, manufacturing, and CAD designing. We show you how to transfer your ideas to physical form. As a result of being exposed to many aspects of the building process, you are provided with valuable knowledge about how each aspect of a build fits together. Through the Operations branch, you can learn grant writing, one of the most powerful skills our team can teach. We take you through the entire process, from finding the company to writing a grant to maintaining strong sponsor relations. In Outreach, you learn to plan and host events from sign up to the actual day of the event. Additionally, you learn how to mentor FLL teams and help them have a successful season. In Marketing, you learn how to screenprint, manufacture buttons, and use photoshop. Using these skills, you can design logos, which are printed onto our teams T-shirts and jackets in the screenprint shop. In addition, being a part of an FRC team opens up many scholarship opportunities offered by FIRST. However, more than any one of these, being on Team Paradox is being a part of a community of other smart, creative and fun people who want to help you succeed.
If your child has not yet joined the team and you would like them to, a great place to start is to have them sign up for our email list and start attending the Weekly Monday Meetings. At first it may seem like there is little to do, but the team picks up pace starting in late September with our Geared Learning Program. If your child has joined the team and you are interested in supporting them and the team, there are lots of opportunities to start getting involved. Attending the All Team Meeting in September is a good place to start. There, you can learn more about the team and talk to current mentors and parents to see how you can help. Make sure you are on our emailing list to receive our Weekly Emails.
Parents often help with carpooling to events, bringing in food, and supervising. There is no paperwork required to bring in food for the team. We always appreciate food at the start of our Weekly Monday Meetings but we particularly need help during Build Season to supply dinners to students working on the robot. If you’re interested in helping with official carpools to events, the district requires parents to fill out drivers forms prior to the event. To access this paperwork, contact our team President, Kylah Clay. You only need to fill out the paperwork once to be set for the rest of the year. Additionally, if you are interested in supervising students, you must become an official district-approved supervisor. Contact our team President early to begin getting district approved, for it is a long process.
We want you to be a part of the team. Bringing in food is the number one way avoid being the embarrassing parent, and become the instantly loved savior of starving high school students (high school students are always hungry). The team would not function if not for the gracious support of our Parents and Mentors. If you're interested in investing more of your time into this incredible program look below to find out what it means to be a Mentor.
Mentors range anywhere from parents who want to become more involved in the team to community members who want to support our cause. Regardless, all of our mentors are dedicated to helping the next generation succeed. We participate in a variety of different community events, including the biannual Encinitas Street Fairs and Relay for Life. If you can sign up for our email list at any of these events and expect an email from the team within a week. We also recommend emailing the team or contacting us through our social media outlets to insure that you get onto our radar.
All mentors must be registered supervisors with the district or be in the process of getting approved. To get the needed paperwork contact our team President, Kylah Clay. We are always looking for mentors with skills in a variety of fields including but not limited to: machining, electrical engineering, CAD designing, financial advisory, marketing, and video editing. Mentoring can be time consuming and we recognize how valuable our mentor’s time is, so all help is always appreciated.
Our team would not function without the support of our mentors, who provide us with valuable insight into a number of different fields. Being a mentor puts you in the position to pass along knowledge to the next generation and help student’s passions blossom.